Vulpes Libris

A collective of bibliophiles talking about books. Book Fox (vulpes libris): small bibliovorous mammal of overactive imagination and uncommonly large bookshop expenses. Habitat: anywhere the rustle of pages can be heard.

Wishing for Winter by K. Eason

When your husband turns into a troll hiding under the dissertation bridge, you get very good at doing things by yourself. But I could only do so much yoga and … Continue reading

September 5, 2016 · 1 Comment

The Lord of the Rings revisited.

The Lord of the Rings is the ultimate ‘marmite’ book. Those who have an opinion about it one way or another either love it with an undying passion or – … Continue reading

January 27, 2016 · 11 Comments

The Benefits of Merciless Respect

Janet Allison Brown A few years ago, when my husband was travelling and the kids were becoming self-sufficient, I finally finished a novel I was proud of: The Walker’s Daughter, … Continue reading

September 17, 2014 · 3 Comments

Angelmaker by Nick Harkaway

This complex, multi-layered novel is a combination of steampunk fantasy and spy thriller with a healthy slug of Victorian engineering and clockwork technology. It features Joe Spork, an unlikely, reluctant … Continue reading

December 13, 2012 · 3 Comments

Coming up – Fantasy Week on Vulpes Libris

Let it not be said that the Book Foxes don’t know what to do when they spot a bandwagon: and here we are leaping with all four feet onto the … Continue reading

December 9, 2012 · Leave a comment

Walking through walls in Montmartre

Marcel Aymé’s calmly fantastical short stories reviewed, with an interview with the translator on the craft of translating. Classic French literature can be intimidating. I’ve enjoyed a bit of Zola, … Continue reading

September 6, 2012 · 7 Comments

The Song of Achilles by Madeline Miller – a stonkingly good novel and a worthy prizewinner

Greece in the age of heroes. Patroclus, an awkward young prince, has been exiled to the court of King Peleus and his perfect son Achilles. Despite their differences, Achilles befriends … Continue reading

August 30, 2012 · 16 Comments

A proper look at dragons

Some time ago I bought a novel on dragons on the recommendation of a terribly senior American academic who studies fantasy professionally. He said it was fresh, vivid, a wild … Continue reading

August 15, 2012 · 10 Comments

It’s summer!!…

The Book Foxes have been having a high old time over the last few months, reading and reviewing a whole plethora of books for your delectation. Now it’s time for … Continue reading

July 29, 2012 · 8 Comments

Shades of Grey by Jasper Fforde

In his Thursday Next series, Jasper Fforde sets out his stall as a writer of comic fantasy with a vision of an alternative Britain. That series is set in a … Continue reading

August 25, 2011 · 6 Comments

Seeker by Andy Frankham-Allen: where the world is not at all what you thought it was

Meet Willem Townsend: London-based entrepreneur, loyal friend and loving uncle. To all intents and purposes a man who has everything going for him. But Willem feels bound by his responsibilities, … Continue reading

April 7, 2011 · 13 Comments

Ice by Sarah Beth Durst

This is a story about a young girl who falls in love with a polar bear. I’m telling you this outright because that is the reason I picked the book … Continue reading

December 8, 2010 · 5 Comments

The Poison Diaries by Maryrose Wood: of passions, poisons and the power of plants

A dark, gothic tale of romance… and murder. In the right dose, everything is a poison. Jessamine has spent her whole life in a cottage close to her father’s apothecary … Continue reading

November 4, 2010 · 6 Comments

Enchanted Glass by Diana Wynne Jones: through a glass lightly …

When Andrew Hope’s magician grandfather dies, he leaves his house and field-of-care to his grandson who spent much of his childhood there. Andrew has forgotten much of this, but he … Continue reading

October 14, 2010 · 13 Comments



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  • (The header image is from Aesop's Fables, illustrated by Francis Barlow (1666), and appears courtesy of the Digital and Multimedia Center at the Michigan State University Libraries.)